Find out if you can apply for a transit visa

Make sure you need a visa to transit through Canada

Before you apply, find out which entry document you need to transit through Canada. This could be a visa or an Electronic Travel Authorization. The entry document you need depends on:

  • the type of travel document you plan to travel with
  • the country that issued your travel document
  • your nationality
  • your method of travel to Canada for this trip

A transit visa is an official document stamped in your passport. It shows that you meet the requirements to transit through a Canadian airport. It can be valid for one or two entries, depending on your travel plans. You must use your visa before it expires.

You will need a visitor visa (not a transit visa) if you are crossing the border by:

  • land (bus, car, train)
  • sea (boat, cruise ship)

Who needs a transit visa?

You need a transit visa if you are from a visa-required country and:

  • your international flight stops at a Canadian airport on its way to another country
  • you will be connecting between two international flights at a Canadian airport

Some people can transit through Canada without a visa if they are travelling to or from the United States. Find out if you can transit without a visa.

Basic travel requirements

You must meet some basic requirements to travel to Canada. You must:

  • have a valid travel document, like a passport
  • be in good health
  • have no criminal or immigration-related convictions
  • have proof that you can enter your destination country and any other country on your trip
  • convince an immigration officer that you have ties—such as a job, home, financial assets or family—that will take you back to your home country
  • convince an immigration officer that you won’t stay in Canada
  • have enough money for your trip

You may also need a medical exam and letter of invitation from someone who lives in Canada.

Some people are not admissible to Canada, which means they are not allowed to enter the country. You can be inadmissible for several reasons, including being involved in:

  • criminal activity
  • human rights violations
  • organized crime

You can also be inadmissible for other security, health or financial reasons. Find out more about inadmissibility.

Carry valid travel documents

When travelling to Canada, you must have a valid passport for yourself and any children travelling with you. Passports are the only reliable and universally accepted identification document for travelling.

If you don’t have the proper documents with you, you may be:

  • delayed
  • unable to transit through Canada
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